Do you want to know about Vizsla pointing? If the answer is yes then this is for you.
First of all, let’s define what “pointing” really is. While I’m certainly not an expert, I would say it’s when your dog stands completely motionless while watching a bird or animal intently. He’d be like a statue until you released him to fetch the game.
Vizsla Pointing can sometimes be mistaken for just simply “staying put” or if not that, having the dog stare fixedly at the game. But there’s more to it than that, as your dog is very likely to do the latter (staring at the game) with or without training.
Why You Should Train Your Vizsla to Point:
Pointing can be a valuable asset if you’re hunting with your dog. Trainers say that dogs who have been properly trained to point make great turkey retrievers too. This is because they know how to stand still and wait for their masters’ commands, which makes them perfect for blind retrieves.
n the US, there are over 12 states that prohibit or discourage allowing dogs in hunting areas during firearm season. In these states, it is illegal for dogs to hunt in wild games, even if they treed the squirrel themselves. Having a dog that could “stay put” until you commanded is very much handy for hunters who want to drive into the area before “letting the dog do his magic”.
The main reason you would want your Vizsla to train is that it is a skill that will help him in the field when he hunts down birds and animals. Even if he has no intention of actually bringing down the game, it is useful for him to point out where the game is so that you can locate it yourself.
Vizsla Pointing: Step By Step Guide
One of the first things to keep in mind is that your Vizsla should be well socialized. You must make sure he loves everyone and everything; especially if you intend to take him out hunting with other dogs, horses, etc. He also needs to have a good recall so he doesn’t wander off to chase birds and other animals.
All you need is a well-behaved and obedient Vizsla who always responds to your commands like; come, sit, stay, heel, or lay down. If you already have or can easily establish those things then that’s half the battle right there!
The next thing to do is decide where you want to train your dog. It helps if this place is quiet and secluded so that there are no distractions both for you and your Vizsla.
Some people prefer to take their dogs outside for training, but since I live in an apartment, I train mine inside the house without ever going out. That’s alright too because the most important thing is just making sure he can follow commands regardless of where you’re doing it.
Next, get your Vizsla pointing started by teaching him the basic “come” command. Have a friend or family member hold your Vizsla while you act as the “bait”. I just use my hand for this because it’s easy to carry around.
Once your friend has a solid grip on your dog, run away from him and call out his name (or whatever command word you want to use). Once he lets go of your dog, call him back to you immediately with the same command word. If he takes too long then just go get him yourself.
Repeat this several times until your Vizsla begins to understand what you want from him. Once he starts coming back on his own after every time, it’s time to introduce a treat as an added incentive. Keep in mind that you should try not to use treats more than just a few times. If he comes back every time without it then don’t give him the treat anymore.
You can test out if your Vizsla pointing is ready for an actual game by placing some feathers on the floor and calling him back with his command word. He’ll probably be very excited and may not want to obey the first few times, but he’ll eventually get used to it after a lot of repetition.
Things to Remember While Vizsla Pointing
These tips and techniques should help you train your dog effectively:
Always be calm and confident while training. Your body language and tone of voice will make a big impact on the way your dog sees things. Never, ever scold him harshly for not knowing something. Keep in mind that dogs learn best when there’s no emotional strain involved.
Work in short sessions and avoid over-training your dog. This is so you can keep him fresh and enthusiastic about the whole process, which will make it a lot easier for both of you. Not to forget, Vizslas are energetic dogs who need to expend their energy to prevent them from becoming hyperactive and restless!
Your dog should be well-fed before any training sessions. You want his focus to be on obeying you rather than thinking about food; especially if there’s a game he’ll get to chase after when he gets what he wants.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
This is a very common problem and in most cases, it’s because you’re not using the right command word for him to associate with coming back to you. Keep trying different words until he starts listening!
Yes, but it’s best to try not to use them too much so he doesn’t become over-excited when training. In some cases, people have had success using a clicker instead of treats which I think might be another good option if you don’t want to do give him a treat all the time.
Yes, it’s very important for his safety and your peace of mind! You can attempt Vizsla pointing with an untrained dog, but things will go a lot smoother if he knows basic commands like “come” and “sit”.
It depends on your dog’s personality and how much time you can devote to training. If you have a high-energy dog, he may need more frequent sessions than a laid-back pooch. It also depends on how much time you can devote to training. We recommend that you spend at least 20 minutes a day working with your dog.
Check out our Vizsla pointing guide. It is a complete resource to help you train your dog to be the best pointing dog he can be! It is important to remember that Vizslas are a working breed and they need exercise. A daily walk or two will not be enough for this breed. They need a lot of space to run around in, preferably a large yard with room to run. If you are not able to give your Vizsla the exercise he needs, then this is not the breed for you.
I hope you enjoyed this article on the Vizsla. If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below!